As I have been citing for the past few months, now is one of the best times in history to purchase a home. And with each passing day, that statement becomes more true. The current real estate forecast is set in (and expected to continue to be) a very strong buyer’s market. There was the tax credit, a current multitude of inexpensive foreclosures, incentives from home sellers galore, and mortgage rates that continue to drop to record lows. Still, deciding to purchase a home is a decision that requires careful consideration and planning. But in an effort to help you, I have compiled just about everything you need to know about the current market, and the preliminary planning you should do to get started on purchasing your home!
For starters, here are the facts. The mortgage rates have dropped to the lowest level on record for the fifth time in six weeks. This makes homebuying and refinancing the most attractive and inexpensive in decades. Freddie Mac says the average rate for 30-year fixed loans this week was 4.54 percent, down from 4.56 last week. That’s the lowest since Freddie Mac began tracking rates in 1971. Additionally, the rate on the 15-year fixed loan dropped to 4 percent, down from 4.03 percent last week – and the lowest on record.
Second, I wouldn’t continue to mention this if it were not a critical point in the current market trends: we are in a buyer’s market. This means that sellers are more willing to court buyers, whether that means dropping the price, throwing in high-end appliance extras, or agreeing to upgrades. Prospective buyers are in the proverbial driver’s seat, and have not experienced this level of bargaining power in decades.
Important things to remember when looking to buy a home.
Finally, make sure you are completely prepared for the all-important financial aspect of this purchase. There are many handy calculators to help determine how much house you can afford, and what you can expect your monthly mortgage payment to be. CNNMoney offers such resources, and they are available here:
Remember, it is wise to aim for a home you can afford, and to be knowledgeable and prepared with the facts on payments before you begin your search for a home.
Buying a home is a process that requires plenty of initial thought, planning, and consideration. But by familiarizing yourself with the information presented above, it does not have to seem as daunting a task! As always, consider me your one-stop-shop for expert real estate advice. I will be happy to discuss the initial thought process behind your search, help you look at specific homes, or discuss any general questions you may have about purchasing a home. Now is the best time in decades to be in the market to buy a home. Allow me to help you with your dream!
Clay Lee – Realtor
Century 21 Beal, Inc.
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